Tuesday, June 9, 2015

New paper: “Does Mortality Differ Between Public and Private Sector Workers?”

The Center for Retirement Research has released a new issue brief: 

“Does Mortality Differ Between Public and Private Sector Workers?” by Alicia H. Munnell, Jean-Pierre Aubry, and Geoffrey T. Sanzenbacher.

The brief’s key findings are:
  • In projecting pension costs, state and local plans assume their workers will live longer than private sector workers.  Is this assumption accurate and, if so, why?
  • The analysis confirms that public sector workers – particularly women – have lower mortality rates than their private sector counterparts.
  • The question is whether lower mortality reflects the nature of the job or the nature of the workers.
  • The answer is the workers – specifically their education levels.  Controlling for education, the gap between public and private workers disappears. 

This brief is available here.

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